Credit Cards for Fair Credit

Getting and keeping a good credit history requires finding and using the right credit cards, the right way. Compare our list of credit cards and prepaid debit cards specifically designed for people with Fair Credit, and find the best one for you. Credit even better than fair? Check out our list of credit cards for excellent credit applicants.

See offers from our partners below.

 APPLY ONLINE

at Capital One's
secure site

Credit Needed
Average, Fair, Limited
  • Pay no annual fee
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time
  • Fraud coverage if your card is lost or stolen
  • Use online banking to access your account, even from your smartphone, with our mobile app
  • Pay by check, online or at a local branch, all with no fee - and pick the monthly due date that works best for you
  • Get access to your account 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Help strengthen your credit for the future with responsible card use
  • See additional Capital One® Platinum Credit Card details
 APPLY NOW

at Capital One's
secure site

Credit Needed
Average, Fair, Limited
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    24.99% (Variable)
    Annual Fee
    $0
    Credit Needed
    Average, Fair, Limited
 APPLY ONLINE

at Chase's
secure site

Credit Needed
Excellent/Good
  • $0 Introductory balance transfer fee for transfers made during the first 60 days of account opening
  • 0% Introductory APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
  • Monthly FICO® Score and Credit Dashboard for free
  • No Penalty APR - Paying late won't raise your interest rate (APR). All other account pricing and terms apply
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • See additional Chase Slate® details
 APPLY NOW

at Chase's
secure site

Credit Needed
Excellent/Good
  • Purchases Intro APR
    0% for 15 months
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    0% for 15 months
    Regular APR
    15.99% - 24.74% Variable
    Annual Fee
    $0
    Credit Needed
    Excellent/Good
 APPLY ONLINE

at Capital One's
secure site

Credit Needed
Average, Fair, Limited
  • Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, every day
  • Use your QuicksilverOne card and get 50% back as a statement credit on your monthly Spotify Premium subscription, now through April 2018
  • No rotating categories or sign-ups needed to earn cash rewards; plus, cash back won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how much you can earn
  • Get access to a higher credit line after making your first 5 monthly payments on time
  • Fraud coverage if your card is ever lost or stolen
  • Use online banking to access your account, even from your smartphone, with our mobile app
  • Help strengthen your credit for the future with responsible card use
  • See additional Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card details
 APPLY NOW

at Capital One's
secure site

Credit Needed
Average, Fair, Limited
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    24.99% (Variable)
    Annual Fee
    $39
    Credit Needed
    Average, Fair, Limited
 APPLY ONLINE

at Credit One Bank's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Receive 1% cash back on eligible purchases, terms apply
  • Make paying your bill easier with the ability to choose your payment date. Terms apply.
  • See if you Pre-Qualify without harming your credit score
  • Zero fraud liability protects you from unauthorized charges
  • Monitor your credit with free online access to your credit score
  • Show off your style with a premium card design, a fee may apply
  • Receive opportunities for credit line increases, a fee may apply
  • Email or text alerts to remind you when your payment is due
  • See additional Credit One Bank® Cash Back Credit Card details
 APPLY NOW

at Credit One Bank's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    16.99% - 24.99% Variable
    Annual Fee
    $0 - $99
    Credit Needed
    Fair Credit
 APPLY ONLINE

at Discover's
secure site

Credit Needed
Excellent/Good
  • Earn 5% cash back at different places each quarter like gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, Amazon.com, or wholesale clubs up to the quarterly maximum each time you activate.
  • Intro Offer: Discover will match all the cash back earned at the end of your first year, automatically.
 APPLY NOW

at Discover's
secure site

Credit Needed
Excellent/Good
  • Purchases Intro APR
    0% for 14 months
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    0% for 14 months
    Regular APR
    11.99% - 23.99% Variable
    Annual Fee
    $0
    Credit Needed
    Excellent/Good
 APPLY ONLINE

at Genesis Bankcard Services's
secure site

Credit Needed
Good/Fair
  • Quick pre-qualification available with no impact to your credit score
  • Easy pre-qualification process with fast response
  • Choose your custom card design - Free
  • Free online account access
  • Protection from fraud, if your card happens to be lost or stolen
  • Accepted at over 35 Million Locations Worldwide!
  • Previous bankruptcy OK
  • See additional Milestone® Gold Mastercard® details
 APPLY NOW

at Genesis Bankcard Services's
secure site

Credit Needed
Good/Fair
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    23.90%
    Annual Fee
    $35-$99 (varies by credit level)
    Credit Needed
    Good/Fair
 APPLY ONLINE

at Credit One Bank's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Interested in growing or rebuilding your credit? We report monthly payment activity to all three major credit bureaus to help keep your credit score up-to-date.
  • Take advantage of free online access to your monthly Experian credit score and credit report summary
  • See if you Pre-Qualify in less than 60 seconds.
  • This is a fully functional, unsecured credit card - not a debit, prepaid, or secured card. No need to load funds or tie up cash in deposits. There are no out-of-pocket costs to open your account.
  • Automatically get 1% cash back on eligible purchases, terms apply.
  • Choose your monthly payment due date for added convenience, terms apply.
  • See additional Credit One Bank® Platinum Visa® details
 APPLY NOW

at Credit One Bank's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    16.99% - 24.99% Variable
    Annual Fee
    $0 - $99
    Credit Needed
    Fair Credit
 APPLY ONLINE

at Credit One Bank's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • This unsecured card requires no deposit and can help build your credit
  • Receive opportunities for credit line increases, a fee may apply
  • See if you Pre-Qualify in less than 60 seconds
  • Receive 1% cash back on eligible purchases, terms apply
  • Choose your monthly payment due date for added convenience, terms apply
  • Monitor your credit with free online access to your credit score
  • See additional Credit One Bank® Platinum Credit Card with Rewards details
 APPLY NOW

at Credit One Bank's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    16.99% - 24.99% Variable
    Annual Fee
    $0 - $99
    Credit Needed
    Fair Credit
 APPLY ONLINE

at Genesis Bankcard Services's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Pre-qualification available with no impact to your credit score
  • Previous bankruptcy OK
  • Easy pre-qualification process with fast response
  • Free online account access (mobile friendly)
  • Protection from fraud, if your card happens to be lost or stolen
  • Accepted at over 35 Million Locations Worldwide!
  • See additional Indigo® Platinum Mastercard® details
 APPLY NOW

at Genesis Bankcard Services's
secure site

Credit Needed
Fair Credit
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    N/A
    Regular APR
    23.90%
    Annual Fee
    $0 - $99
    Credit Needed
    Fair Credit
 APPLY ONLINE

at USAA's
secure site

Credit Needed
Excellent, Good, Fair
  • With this card, you can help DAV empower veterans to lead high-quality lives with respect and dignity.
  • Get 2,500 Bonus Points after your first purchase.
  • Start earning 1 point for every $1 spent for all your every day purchases.
  • Redeem points for 1% cash back or use them to purchase travel, gift cards and merchandise. You can also redeem your points and donate to your favorite military affiliate group.
  • Redeem your rewards points anytime on usaa.com or from your mobile phone — with no redemption fee.
  • Enjoy no cap or expiration date on points.
  • Enjoy no foreign transaction fees when you travel outside of the United States
  • Rates and Fees
  • See additional Disabled American Veterans USAA Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card details
 APPLY NOW

at USAA's
secure site

Credit Needed
Excellent, Good, Fair
  • Purchases Intro APR
    N/A
    Balance Transfers Intro APR
    0% for 12 months
    Regular APR
    11.90% to 26.90% Variable
    Annual Fee
    $0
    Credit Needed
    Excellent, Good, Fair
Show More Results


Compare Credit Card Offers for Fair Credit

Updated: December 1, 2017

CreditCards.com's Best Credit Cards for Fair Credit in 2017 are:

  • Capital One® Platinum Credit Card
  • Chase Slate®
  • Capital One® QuicksilverOne® Cash Rewards Credit Card
  • Credit One® Platinum Visa® Cash Back Rewards Credit Card
  • Discover it® Cashback Match™
  • Milestone® Gold Mastercard®
  • Credit One® Platinum Visa® Credit Card
  • Credit One® Rewards Credit Card
  • Indigo® Platinum Mastercard®
  • Disabled American Veterans USAA Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card

With fair credit, you can build credit with some products, so that you will eventually qualify for better loans and interest rates. But first, baby steps. While not as rich in rewards as cards that require good or excellent credit, there are fair credit cards that offer cash back or points.

Here, we look at:

  • Credit score range for fair credit
  • What is fair/average credit?
  • 6 tips for getting from one credit tier to the next
  • How fast can credit improve?
  • What can I do with a fair credit score?

Learn more about how fair credit works and what it can do for you:

Credit score range for fair credit

The credit score for the fair category differs depending on the scoring model. Scores typically range from bad to excellent. The dominant scoring model is FICO, which has a range of 300-850, with 850 as the best. The fair range for FICO is 580-669. VantageScore, another scoring model, also has a range of 300-850. The equivalent to its fair range is 641-700. (You can get your free VantageScore on creditcards.com, as well as your free TransUnion credit report.) Credit scores are the numbers lenders use to assess your creditworthiness. It helps them decide which loans and interest rates you qualify for. FICO and VantageScore evaluate their scores based on the credit information the 3 major credit bureaus gather, including your payment habits.

What is fair/average credit?

Fair credit, which is the mid-range for scoring models, has medium-high risk for lenders. According to FICO, the dominant scoring model, about 28% of consumers with a fair score are likely to become delinquent. The higher the score, the lower the risk for the lender. A fair credit score range with FICO is 580-669; the fair range for VantageScore is 641-700, with the total range for both being 300-850.

6 tips for getting from one credit tier to the next

There are typically 5 credit score ranges: bad, poor, fair, good and excellent. The better your score, the better the terms on your loans and the better the credit card offers. Here’s how to improve your score:

  • Check your credit score and credit reports. Make sure there are no errors; have the credit bureaus correct any that you see.
  • Get a credit card. The easiest and fastest way to build your credit is by using a credit card correctly. Look at the different types of cards, and select one that you will likely qualify for.
  • Don’t apply for multiple cards at once. Every time you apply, your credit takes a temporary hit. Too many and lenders might think you are desperate for credit.
  • Pay on time and in full. Some 65% of your FICO credit score is positively impacted by on-time payments and having a low balance on your card. You want it as close to zero as possible.
  • Make a small payment each month. Be sure to keep the card active by making a small charge each month that you pay off by the due date. This helps build your credit history.
  • Take out an installment loan. Scoring models like to see that you have a mix of credit. While credit cards have revolving credit, car loans and mortgages are installment loans. Check with your financial provider to see if they have credit-builder loans that you can use to boost your credit.

How fast can credit improve?

If your credit reports are accurate and all negative items have been rectified, you have a credit card that you use, and you are paying on time and in full each month, it will take just a few months for your credit score to improve. Your most recent credit information has the most weight, so as you pay each month, you are steadily improving your credit. Most negative credit information falls off after 7 years, but even if it is on your reports, the older it is, the less important it is.

What can I do with a fair credit score?

With good credit, you can get better loan products, including improved interest rates and rich credit card offers. With fair credit, your options are more limited, but it’s not hopeless. For example, it’s possible to get a credit card with rewards or an installment loan, although the interest rate will likely be higher than if you have good or excellent credit. If you have fair credit, it might be best to keep working on building your credit before taking out a car loan or mortgage, because you can save thousands with the lower interest rates you get with better credit. How do you build credit? A credit card is the fastest and easiest way to get to good or excellent credit. Just pay on time and in full each month, putting a small monthly charge on the card. Even with fair credit, there are a number of benefits available on certain cards, including:

  • No annual fee
  • 1% or more cash back for every dollar spent
  • Access to a card even if you’ve filed for bankruptcy in the past
  • Access to a higher credit line after paying on time for a series of months